11 Things That’ll Tank Your Credit Score

Obviously, missing a payment is detrimental to your efforts to create a good credit history. A missed payment, if left for long enough, will be reported to credit bureaus and linger over your future credit health. Missed payments are one of the most visible forms of breaking your agreement to repay a loan, and if you wait for more than a month to pay down an overdue bill, you could be looking at a drop in your credit score of as much as 100 points.

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Not only does a late payment have the potential to knock a gigantic chunk out of your credit score, but late fees and other accumulated interest that’s added onto your bill can result in an even deeper hole than the one you’ve already found yourself in (resulting in an inability to pay the bill on time). Missing payments should be avoided at all costs because of their potentially detrimental effect on your score and the knock-on consequences that follow.

Fortunately, a late payment made just a few days after it’s due typically won’t incur the same extreme wrath from your lender. Functionally, it takes effort from a lender to report a missed payment to credit bureaus, and so they won’t generally initiate this reporting protocol immediately after a payment is officially late. However, if you’re chronically late on your bills, you can’t necessarily count on this quasi-grace period to remain in effect indefinitely.

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